Friday, March 11, 2016

RIP Miles Swarthout

RIP Miles Swarthout

Miles Hood Swarthout, the only child of writers Glendon Swarthout and Kathryn Swarthout, died February 2nd at his Playa Del Rey home. While his novelist father, Glendon, taught creative writing at Michigan State University he wrote two bestsellers that became big films -- "They Came To Cordura" and the first of the beach pictures, MGM's hit "Where The Boys Are." The family moved to Scottsdale, Arizona, for Miles' high school, where he captained the tennis team and his parents collaborated on six young adult novels including "Whichaway,". Miles majored in English at Claremont McKenna College in Claremont, California, while his dad authored the biggest-selling novel ever set in Arizona, "Bless the Beasts & Children," which Stanley Kramer filmed around Prescott. After stints modeling clothes, appearing in TV commercials and as a DJ on Phoenix rock radio, Miles spent a year as a VISTA Volunteer on the Acoma Pueblo in New Mexico. He then got a Masters degree in Telecommunications from the University of Southern California and has since taught screenwriting and film history at his alma mater, CMC, and Arizona State University.

As a screenwriter, Miles adapted his father's Spur-winning novel," The Shootist," which garnered him a Writer's Guild nomination in 1976 for Best Adaptation and went into cinema history as John Wayne's final film. After a CBS TV-Movie, "A Christmas To Remember," and other script sales, both adaptations of his dad's 16 novels and originals, Miles became a filmmaker himself in 1997 with "Mulligans"!, a 35mm. short comedy which has become a hit, playing 42 film festivals, winning 8 prizes internationally and airing 50 times on the Women's Entertainment cable network. Besides writing numerous articles for magazines and film reviews for "The Roundup," the magazine of the Western Writers of America, Miles edited a collection of his late father's short stories," Easterns and Westerns," for Michigan State University Press in 2001. One of his dad's stories Miles expanded into his first Western novel, "The Sergeant's Lady," for Forge Books in 2003, which he also thought would make a dandy movie. Swarthout lived in Playa del Rey near the Los Angeles airport, where he enjoyed body surfing, tennis, chasing starlets and riding an occasional horse.

Born: 1946, Ann Arbor, Michigan, U.S.A.
Died: 2/2/2016, Playa Del Rey, California, U.S.A.

Miles Swarthout’s westerns – screenwriter:
The Shootist – 1976
The Homesman - 2013

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